Leap Year Day

Happy Leap Year Day to you all, especially those who might be celebrating this once-in-four-years birthday! 🙂

I have learned from several sources that it is good to be consistent when blogging, so I think I will try to make Wednesdays my crafty-post-day, or maybe every second Wednesday, depending on how many crafty things I get down during the week. Last Wednesday, I attended a scrapbook class where we created a two-page layout from the Close To My Heart Workshop-On-The-Go entitled Roxie.

For these classes, our instructor and CTMH rep, Colette Dunlop, creates a layout that is different from those in the WOTG booklet and shows us how to do it. Usually, she uses one of the pop-up or pocket designs from the Magic book by Jeannette R. Lynton. Here is the two-page Roxie layout that we did:

left-hand page

right-hand page

 

 

 

 

 

 

There should be more pictures on the pages, but I don’t have any printed out, yet. Nevertheless, you should be able to get the idea. You will notice the picture on the right-hand page has a little clip at the top of it. This is the ‘pull’ feature. Just look what happens when you pull it:

 

See how it folds up? Beneath the picture is a place for journalling. I will eventually write out that the grandson is four months in the photo and is teething. That’s why he has his fist in his mouth!

 

 

If you scroll back to the left-hand page of the layout, you will notice a paper rosette. These were rather tricky to make. (Yes, make!) They started out as curly pieces cut with a Cricut* machine. (The top piece shown here)

Anyway, we first ‘distressed’ (brushed on ink with a sponge) the edges. Next, we curled the petal edges and began to roll up the curly piece from the small end to the middle. Believe me, it’s not easy to do without ripping the cardstock! To hold it together, we used ‘Glue Dots’ (double-sided sticky bits) on the centre part and stuck the curled-up part to it. Does that make any sense? It’s hard to explain when you can’t actually see it being done. Maybe someone will take a video of me doing it so you can see the process better. The roses end up being rather bulky, though, so I doubt I will use these on my scrapbook pages. The one that’s on the page hasn’t actually been permanently stuck to it, yet.

*For those of you who have never heard of a Cricut, it is basically a die-cut machine. It uses special cartridges that instruct its cutting blade how to cut out the designs. It’s a really cool device but rather expensive. I have to rely on my sisters-in-law to provide me with the necessary die-cuts, whenever we get together for scrapbooking. At this point I want to give those ladies a shout-out: I have the greatest in-laws in the world! I love them all to pieces. 🙂

For future reference, I will include the pictures of my Roxie layouts on my crafty page.

Hope you enjoyed my Crafty Wednesday post. 🙂

Advertisements

Playing catch-up

It was very exciting last week reading all the flash fiction that the participants of Rachel’s Platform-Building Campaign Challenge and responding to the comments about my own piece. However, that has interfered with me keeping up with all the blogs I have been following so, over the past couple of days, I have been playing catch-up with all of those bloggers. My apologies if you’ve been wondering why I am just commenting on your posts now. There are still a few of the 200 stories that I haven’t had the chance to read yet, so that’s next on my list of things to do.

Thank-you to all who have voted and left such lovely comments about my flash fiction piece. It has been short-listed, which is great!

Today, I took a brief break to console a friend who has been having a rough week and a half. We were able to stop in at Tim’s for coffee/hot chocolate and a treat, then stopped in at Chapters so she could get a magazine for her Dad, who’s in the hospital. Shopping, especially with a friend, can be so cathartic. Sometimes it is necessary to take a break from the hectic life we lead, to get away from our troubles for awhile and vent to someone with a sympathetic ear. I hope my friend is able to breathe a bit better now and that some of the stress from the past little while can roll off her shoulders.

Back to the Challenge to read more flash fiction…

 

On Demand

We had an interesting Writer’s Union meeting today. First, though, we got a brief demonstration of the new Espresso Book Machine that is now housed at the McNally Robinson Booksellers store. It is an On-Demand book maker that is available to writers who would like to self-publish their books. There is an initiation fee of about $70 (I think the demonstrator said) and then each book will have a set price as well as a per page price. Most books produced in this way will cost between $10 – $25 depending on length. Each book is printed and bound all in the same machine. It was very cool to see it being produced, as the sides are glass so you can actually see the whole process. They will only accept .pdf files, though, including the covers. The machine can also trim the book as long as it is smaller than 8″ x 10.5″ and larger than 4.5″ x 5″. The shortest book they can print is 40 pages but they can make books up to 800 pages! McNally’s will then help you promote your book with a well-publicized launch and sell the books in their store, place it on their e-commerce website and make it available for Print-On-Demand at other bookstores.

Now, to our meeting: TWUC (The Writer’s Union of Canada) is gearing up for their AGM in Vancouver coming up this May. It sounds like an interesting event. I have only been a member for less than a year, so I doubt I’ll end up going, but some of the activities include a harbour cruise, a rookie reception, a cabaret and eight panel discussions including: ‘Found In Translation‘, which will be a panel discussing the creative roles of both author and translator. Another panel, ‘Is Technology Changing Craft and Audience?‘ will be exploring the way technology is affecting writers and readers. ‘First Time Authors’ Tales ad Trials‘ will feature a poet, a short story writer, an Amazon self-published YA novelist, a graphic novel memoirist who will enlighten their audience about what strategies they used to finish their manuscripts, publish them and promote their books. On the panel, ‘Buy! Sell! Borrow! Read!‘, the panelists will discuss the changes in how books are sold and read. ‘Eco-Writing: New Leaves‘ will explore how eco-writing differs from nature writing. ‘Going Digital In Your Own Backyard: A Workshop‘ will give instructions and answers on how to publish digitally. ‘Not For Profit? Writers and the Downloadable Universe‘ will make clear the “fair dealing” clauses in Canada’s Copyright Act. ‘Promoting Our Books: Tricks of the Trade‘ will have writers describing how they have successfully taken their books on the road using traditional, innovative marketing techniques and by getting digital.

I’d love to head out to the west coast to take part in these exciting events. I may end up waiting for 2015 when my home town will be hosting the AGM. If these events sound interesting to you, you might want to consider joining TWUC, but you need to be Canadian and have a published work under your belt. The more the merrier! 🙂

Tagged, again, among other things

As you may have noticed, I have changed my Gravatar, the picture that appears in reference to my blog. That is my first order of business for today. I want to thank all those who responded to my post Changes where I asked which picture I should choose for my new Gravatar. Of those 12, only 3 suggested something other than the girl and the tree, the portion of book cover from Spirit Quest, so the ‘tree-huggers’ won! Personally, I think it works best as a Gravatar, not only because it represents my work but also because it has great contrast so it shows up well as such a small symbol. My thanks to Relish Design Studios, who created the image.

On to the next order of business. I have been tagged again. Isn’t this a fun game? K S Collier was my tagger, in case you want to learn more about her by checking out her blog. These are the questions she posed to me and my answers:

1.  What do you write, fiction or nonfiction? Fiction

2.  What are your favorite sweets? Chocolate, the darker the better. Adding nuts or caramel makes it better still.

3.  How often do you write? Before I re-entered the work place, I wrote every day, usually first thing in the morning when the ideas are fresh in my mind. Lately, it’s whenever I get the chance, which isn’t as often as I’d like.

4.  Do you write by outlining first, or by the seat of your pants? Seat of my pants has worked pretty well so far. There have been a few pieces that have involved more detailed planning.

5.  Do you use foreshadowing to strengthen your plotline? Most definitely!

6.  Who is your favorite author? That depends on the genre: SciFi/fantasy – Anne McCaffrey; Adventure – Clive Cussler; Forensic murder mysteries – Kathy Reichs, Mystery with a dash of humour – Karen Dudley; Historical fiction – James Clavell; Historical Romance; Diana Gabaldon; YA Fiction – Anita Daher (she was also my editor for Spirit Quest)

7.  What is your favorite movie or movie series? It’s a toss-up between the Narnia Chronicles and Lord of the Rings

8.  What genre do you write? I’ve dabbled in just about every genre except for horror. My most successful work has been YA fiction.

9.  Name your future pet, and describe them? Once our beloved kitty (a Polydactyl Tuxedo Cat with a milk moustache) passes beyond the veil, I doubt we’ll get another pet. Hubby & I would like to travel when we retire and it wouldn’t be fair on a pet to leave them so much.

10.  What is your all time favorite character, whether your own or someone else’s? Probably Aslan from Narnia

11.  Do you have a stuffed animal in your possession, if so, what type? Just before my first book came out, I found a life-size snowy owl puppet that is stuffed to look like a real one with the head that turns and wings that flap. I used it while reading the spooky graveyard scene and popped it up from behind the podium when the owl in my story hooted. I made everyone jump! I also have a stuffed bear that a friend sent me for my first book launch, a representation of one of my characters, Bear. Whenever I speak to younger audiences, I bring them both along with me as props.

Now is the time when I ‘tag’ other bloggers and ask them some questions.

I tried to choose people who haven’t been tagged in a while so I hope they will participate. These are the blogs/bloggers I will tag in case you’d like to check out their answers:

Barbara’s Meanderings

David Powers King

Paper Mountain

Sheery’s Place

Jocelyn Rish

Minivan Momma

Sherri

And here are the questions I hope they will answer:

1. What is the name of the book you are currently reading?

2. What type of music do you prefer. Favourite song?

3. If you could go anywhere in this world or a fictitious one, where would you go?

4. Do you currently have any pets?

5. When do you usually set aside time to write?

6. What is the most interesting way in which you (or some other author) has killed off a character?

7. Have you ever written a piece of fan fiction? If so, for which show/movie?

8. Do you have a specific place in which you do most of your writing?

9. What is your favourite meal?

10. Do you have any non-writing hobbies?

11. If you had a time machine, when would you go?

My last thing to say today is, I have added the first three chapters of my story Revolution to My Unfinished Work page, if you’d like to read more of the story for which I wrote my Flash Fiction piece.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Changes

A friend who has been blogging for longer than I have gave me some gentle hints about some changes she thought I should make. One of the suggestions was to put up a less depressing Gravatar picture. She thought the picture of the crypt might scare away many of my younger readers and creep out some of the older ones! The problem is, I can’t decide what photo I should use instead. Perhaps some of you could help me with that decision. Here are my choices:

Number 1 – a Klingon and me, taken at The Star Trek Experience in Las Vegas in 2004. This is the picture I used when I started my Blogpost last year and the blog identity I have to use when commenting on some of the Blogpost sites, since my WordPress ID doesn’t always work. It might be good to have a consistent picture for both sites. Do you agree?

 

Number 2 – a portion of the cover from my second book ‘Spirit Quest’. I think that Relish Design Studios did a wonderful job on the cover and thought it might be a good idea to show it off.

 

Number 3 – I was going through some old pictures, wondering if there were any that I could use and found a couple if interesting ones First, there was this picture of me when I was about 3 taken at Halloween. Great disguise, don’t you think?

 

Number 4 – Or maybe this one of me at around age 5 suits me better! lol

 

 

 

Number 5 is a picture of one of the bells from the St. Boniface Cathedral, which figures strongly in my next book. Perhaps this would be more appropriate than the sarcophagus containing the remains of Archbishop Cochrane, who rescued Michelle in the first book.

 

 

Number 6 – and finally, the cutest of all, in my opinion, is this pic of my grandson taken last weekend. Mind you, I’m not so sure I should plaster his face all over the internet, but for those who are visiting my blog, it is a rare treat for you!

So, of the first five pictures I have posted, which do you think would make the best Gravatar picture to replace the creepy old crypt? I will make my decision on Friday, I think.

 

One change that I have already made is I added an email address to my About page. I should have done this from the beginning so that people can contact me directly, especially if they are too shy to have their comments posted publicly or their comments are too personal for others to read. One of my readers recently pointed this out to me, as well as my friend, so I replied to her comment and added the email address into the REPLY on the About page.

Well, I think that’s about it for now. I look forward to reading your comments. 🙂

Flash Fiction Campaigner Challenge

Well, I think I lived up to the challenge Rachel gave us Writer’s Platform-Building Campaigners. The rules she set up are:

Write a short story/flash fiction story in 200 words or less, excluding the title. It can be in any format, including a poem. Begin the story with the words, “Shadows crept across the wall”. These five words will be included in the word count.

If you want to give yourself an added challenge (optional), do one or more of these:

  • end the story with the words: “everything faded.” (also included in the word count)
  • include the word “orange” in the story
  • write in the same genre you normally write
  • make your story 200 words exactly!

I decided to make this piece of flash fiction something I could add into my next story, so here it is:

Shadows crept across the wall, wavering strangely, not flickering across the straight flat edge of my bedroom wall, but the sloped whitened skin of a tepee painted with the orange design of a bison. It took a moment for my brain to grasp the significance of that. Then I remembered the withershins, the ritual that had landed me here in 1869.

A familiar snore roared from the man on the other side of the fire. I glanced over at him – the man with my father’s face, the man whose spirit had been reborn into the man my mother loved in the future. Bear stirred but did not awaken.

The various-sized mounds of his children slept around me. One of them would be my great-great-great-great-whatever grandmother or grandfather. I tried hard to wrap my mind around the fact that I had travelled over a hundred and forty years back in time. Why was I here?  When Mom came back, she’d had a destiny. I wondered what mine was.

It was too much.

I yawned, still weary from the long horseback ride from Fort Garry to Bear’s village near what would be Netley Creek. As I drifted back to sleep, everything faded.

Check out Rachel’s site here, where there is a list of other participants and their stories. I’ve already read some of them and they are very good. It’s fun to see how everyone has a different take on those first five words – Shadows crept across the wall…

Kick The Can

Kick The Can was one of my favourite games growing up. We had a five-yard playing area and all the kids on the block would participate. For those of you who have never played it, here’s kind of how it worked: Of course, someone was IT. An empty can was placed in the middle of the yard in plain sight. The other players scattered, while IT counted, usually to one hundred. The rules were kind of like Hide-And-Seek. IT would spot someone and call, “One, two, three on (So-and-so), then race back to touch the can. Those who were caught would have to sit on the front steps until a fellow player snuck up behind IT, kicked the can as far as they could, and ALL the players would scatter, again. If no one was able to free the other players, the person who was caught first would become IT.

What has that to do with anything, you might ask? Well, it’s a game I played when I was younger (and fitter). Another game we used to play was TAG. It seems that TAG is a game that no one outgrows, since I was tagged three times, yesterday! Sorry, I wasn’t able to play before this as I was out most of yesterday and by the time I read my messages, it was late and my brain was too fried to think of how to answer all those questions, let alone think of new ones and to whom to send them.

So, without further ado, here is my response to C. B. Wentworth‘s questions:

1) What book have you always wanted to read, but still haven’t gotten around to it?

Lord of the Rings. I read The Hobbit years ago, bought the series, but never actually sat down to read them (I know, that’s shameful!)

2) What classic book do you feel is overrated? Why?

Don Quiote. I really tried to read it but lost interest pretty quickly.

3) What is your favorite movie adaptation of a book?  Least favorite?

My favourite is the most recent version of C. S. Lewis’ ‘The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe’. Least favourite would probably be the movie based on Frank Hubert’s ‘Dune’. They tried to fit too much into too short of a time. The series was able to fit more in, although I wasn’t crazy about that, either.

4) Where is your favorite place to write?

I used to use the old computer downstairs until it crashed and hasn’t been fixed or upgraded. It was a great space to write with no distractions. All my resources were there for research, which was convenient. Since the decline of that computer, I have taken over that space with my crafting supplies, so I can’t write there any more. I now have a laptop that I can take anywhere, but haven’t found a really good spot other than in my big comfy recliner. If I am doing research, I will use the huge antique dining table where I can spread out all my resources. The only problem with that is when company comes and I have to pack everything up and put it away! I might try taking it to a coffee house and see how I like that setting.

5) Pen or pencil?

Pencil. I like being able to erase my mistakes (because I make a LOT of them!)

6) What was your favorite toy as a child?

A stuffed donkey. I carried it everywhere with me.

7) What is the greatest accomplishment of your life?

Besides raising my two wonderful young adult children, getting published. 🙂

8) If you could wake up tomorrow having gained any one ability or quality, what would it be?

The ability to clean my house in the blink of an eye!

9) What are five songs you hate to admit you love?

Close To You by the Carpenters, anything by John Denver or Barry Manilow.

10) Where is your dream destination, (or place you’ve always wanted to go)?

There are so many places I want to go. One of them is Australia. A friend lived in Waroonga, New South Wales. I love the sound of that name and want to visit more places that sound like that! I also like a lot of TV series (Blue Heelers, Water Rats, Sea Patrol) and I’d like to see some of the places where the shows were set.

11) What are the top five things on your bucket list?

Most of my bucket list involves travel. I wish I could afford to do all of these things:

1. Visit my distant cousins in Britain and then go to Stonehendge, while we’re there

2. Visit my hubby’s cousins in France who own a winery and while we’re in the neighbourhood, I’d like to see the Eiffel Tower

3. See the pyramids and Sphynx up close.

4. See the heads on Easter Island.

5. Take a train trip through Europe and see a lot of castles.

Now, let’s answer Sarah Robertson‘s questions:

1) What do you like to eat for breakfast? 

When I am working, I will usually have orange juice and a bowl of oatmeal with fresh fruit, usually bananas. On weekends, I’ll make bacon & eggs or pancakes.

2) Shakespeare: yay or nay?

Yay

3) Do you have any guilty pleasures? 

Chocolate, chocolate, chocolate!

4) What is your favorite thing to write about? 

I don’t have a favourite. I like to write SciFi, Fantasy, time travel – I like the opportunity to create my own worlds, or walk my character through historical places.

5) Choice of the century: cake or pie? 

cake

6) Got any non-writing hobbies?

I like scrapbooking, either cards or pages

7) If you had a theme song, what would it be?

I have no idea. I racked my brain, trying to think of a song that would suit me, but came up blank

8) What’s your favorite writing snack?

I rarely eat while I am writing. I usually write until my stomach growls, then I’ll go to the fridge. I’ll eat away from the computer and come back to it when I’m finished. I will have a cup of tea or coffee or water within reach, though.

9) Do you have any pets?

I inherited my daughter’s Polydactyl (six-toed) Tuxedo cat when she moved out because she couldn’t take him with her due to medical reasons. I feel a little like Hemmingway, with my six-toed cat!

10) If you could live anywhere, where would it be?

A quaint little cottage in Britain with a beautiful garden – but I would have to be able to hire a gardener as I have a brown thumb!

11) Got any book recommendations?

Anything by Anne McCaffrey or Clive Cussler, but my favourite of all time was ‘Shogun’ by James Clavell.

And finally (whew!) those questions posed by WChaser:

1.  If you could be any fictional baddie who would you be and why?

It’s really hard to imagine myself as a bad person. I rarely even raise my voice or get angry so to imagine me doing anything as bad as a fictional villain is too foreign to me.

2. If you could go back in time and stop someone being born who would it be?

The obvious choice would be Hitler, but I’ve read about all the horrible experiments that Mengela did, so I think the world would be better if he’d never been born.

3. When do you get your most inspirational ideas?

In that moment just before I wake up.

4.  If you had to live without either books or music, which would it be?

Stories can be told without books, so I guess I could live without them. Music, on the other hand, is the universal language. It is a way for me to connect with many of my special needs students.

5.  Who provides the most encouragement for your writing?

My family

6.  If you could have one wish, what would it be?

It would have been nice for my parents to have lived long enough to meet my daughter’s son, so I think my wish would be to live long enough to see my first grandchild born.

7.  Do you remember your dreams and do they influence your writing?

All the time and yes! Many of my stories started off as a dream segment.

8.  What word do you frequently misspell?

One of those ‘i’ before ‘e’ words that has the ‘e’ first, like ‘receive’. When spell check underlines it as a mistake, then I remember to reverse the letters.

9.  How much influence in your writing do you take from other people’s opinions?

I take criticism from my writer’s group very seriously and will often listen to their advice because I trust their judgment.

10. If there is one book you wish you’d written, what is it?

Harry Potter, because it became such an overnight success!

11. Starter or Dessert?

If I’m at a restaurant, I will usually share an appetizer, but then not have room for dessert. At home, I definitely leave room for dessert!

Now is the time when I have to TAG somebody and pose another 11 questions. I tried to pick people from my Campaign that did not seem to have been tagged yet, so here they are:

The Literary Mom

Arresting Developments

Callie Kingston

Jon Yang

Skin and Paper

Unsettled

Journey in Writing

Weaving Colors

Seventh Story Studios

I hope they want to play. Check out their blogs to see if they answered the following questions:

1. What was your favourite book you had to read in school (if you had one)? Least favourite?

2. If you could be any animal on Earth or from a fictional world, what would it be?

3. Who is your favourite villain? Why?

4. What genres do you write? Do you have a favourite?

5. Have you ever taken part in NaNoWriMo? Why or why not?

6. Have you ever written fan fiction? Why or why not?

7. What was the first story you ever wrote? Please describe it in a sentence or two.

8. How long have you been writing?

9. Why did you start blogging?

10. If you could get writing advice from anyone, past or present,who would you ask?

11. What is your favourite food? Least favourite?

All right then, everybody! The ball’s in your court, so to speak!

Thanks!

Late last night I was catching up on all the blogs in my mailbox that I am following and read something that totally amazed me. I was nominated for the Kreativ Blogger and the Versatile Blogger Awards! I am so chuffed! Thanks to fellow blogger eternal Domnation for nominating me.

Now, from what I understand, I am supposed to thank the person who nominated me (check!), drag the pics of the awards to my site (check!), share 10 random facts about me (will do!) and nominate other blogs I find worthy (that will be hard because there are so many!)

Ok, here are the facts most people, not even close friends, might not know about me:

1. I am a TV star! Well, I was for one brief week back in 1962 when I was on the Canadian kids show Romper Room. I don’t remember much about it except for movie clips my Dad took from off-stage and comments Mom made about my performance. I was apparently quite precocious, telling Miss Whoever-it-was-that week that everything she talked about I had done or had in my possession.

2. When I was 12, I had an operation to shave off a few centimeters from a bone overgrowth on my right foot. Now, that might seem like a senseless operation, but for me it was a painful growth that made it difficult to find shoes that didn’t rub or hurt. Since they peeled back the skin to perform the operation, I now have no nerve endings to be affected by shoes anymore.

3. That same year, I wore braces to pull down my vampire-like eye teeth that grew above and in front of my other teeth. To look at me today, you would never know I had braces because the orthodontist back then left one of my front teeth crooked. He said there would not be room for my wisdom teeth to come in if he straightened it and he didn’t want to remove any more of my permanent teeth.

4. I nearly broke my nose playing catch with my best friend. I had such horrible eye-hand coordination that I thought I needed to jump up to catch the hard ball she threw at me. I caught it all right – right between the eyes!

5. I fell on my head when I was about nine. (Many friends say that explains a lot!) I was hanging upside down from the monkey bar on our swing set when I must have hit a nerve in the back of my knees. Both knees suddenly straightened and down I came. Bam! It took months of Chiropractic manipulation to get the bones back in place. As an older adult, my back always seems to hurt in some degree or another. Now, I cringe when I see kids in the playground hanging upside down.

6. I have a fear of ladders. It isn’t the superstitious kind of fear about walking under a ladder. This is a fear of climbing DOWN a ladder. Going up is fine. I think it’s a combination of looking down from a great height, which always makes me dizzy, and the fact that my hips don’t seem to work right (probably from my fall, mentioned above). My worst case of ladder phobia came while my husband and I were honeymooning in Hawaii. We were exploring the underground bunkers in Diamond Head. The last one ended with a ladder going up to the top of the crater. I hesitated, but went up and I’m glad I did because the view from up there is breathtaking. The problem arose as I looked down at our only way back to our car – the rickety (to me) old iron ladder. Hubby had to literally take my foot and place it on each rung in order to get me down. Phew!

7. In my early twenties, I had a real hang-up about looking so young for my age that I blew it when I went for a job interview. I blurted out that I’d had trouble in the past from people not taking me seriously because I looked about thirteen. The stunned looks on the interviewers’ faces let me know the error of my words. Oh, well, I didn’t want the job that much anyway!

8. I hate working retail. As a teen, I worked part-time in a Crafts Store and spent two summers working at the grocery store near the cottage. I’d have nightmares where I was working alone and couldn’t lock up the store at the end of the night because customers kept coming into the shop. I’d wake up suddenly and find myself sitting upright in bed, physically serving customers in my sleep! Since working with kids, I haven’t had any nightmares like that. I do have my non-verbal students speak to me in my dreams and the wheelchair-bound ones up and walking. Now THOSE dreams I LIKE!

9. I never had any cravings while pregnant. The ONE time I brought a pickle to work, everyone made a big deal out of it. My first pregnancy, though, I could eat anything – even soft-shelled tacos, which I LOVED. Second time around, everything seemed to bother me. Maybe it was because my son had a lot more hair at birth than my daughter.

10. Hmmm, I’m running out of secrets. This isn’t really a secret, but probably something my blogging followers don’t know. I am a magpie. I LOVE shiny things. I think I inherited this quality from my Mom because she had a large selection of shiny costume jewelry, which I inherited as well. I did give family members the chance to pick out their favourite pieces, but I ended up with the majority of it, much to my delight.

Now that that’s done, I will mention some of my favourite bloggers and nominate them for these prestigious awards. Some worthy bloggers have recently won them (C. B. Wentworth, wantoncreation, amyoung, Roshrulez Weblog, The Dreamweaver’s Cottage, Thypolar’s Life, ) so check them out too. Here are my nominees:

The Literary Mom

Ramblings

Tim Kane Books

Essi Tolling

commutinggirl

There are many others out there who have wonderful blogs. I will be sure to mention you all at some point in the future. Thanks again, eternal Domnation for nominating me. Happy blogging, everyone!

 

Chain Story Contest

One of the bloggers I am following is having a fun little contest called the Chain Story Contest. You can find the details at The DreamWeaver’s Cottage. It’s a bit like the Twitter Story my writer’s group and I did last year called Tweet Addaline, except it’s a YA story. It should be a lot of fun. If there’s any other YA writers out there who might like to play along, check out her blog.

In other news, I will be speaking to a group of seniors tomorrow about my books and a little bit about Manitoba’s history. I only hope my voice doesn’t fail me. It’s been over three weeks since this darn cold-turned-bronchitis started and although I feel better and have more energy, too much activity still has me coughing up a lung!

Here is the Valentine I made for my hubby:

front

inside

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The lace I used for this year’s Valentines was left over from when my neighbour made my wedding dress. I found it, along with some other lace leftovers, after my Mom passed away and I’ve been using bits and pieces of it to make extra special cards.

Hope you all had a lovely Valentine’s Day. 🙂

Happy Heart Day

Sorry you haven’t heard much from me over the past few days. I’ve  been busy traveling to many wonderful places, meeting many new people, reading many interesting blogs by other talented writers. It’s been a lot of fun, but a little time consuming. I finally got around to doing a little laundry and made a Valentine’s Day card for my grandson. He’s only 9 months old and probably could care less about it, but I made it anyway, even if it’s just a keepsake for his mom. So, here it is:

Front

Inside

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I still have to make one for the hubby, but wanted to post this first. Not that we do much for Valentine’s Day. We are of the mind that we should show our love every day, not just on the day specified by the Hallmark company! Well, I need to go start the card for hubby and make his favourite dish – lasagna. I hope the day brings you all good things. TTFN!